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Descendents of John Thompson (1800 – 25 Aug 1888)
and Isabella Swan ( ca 1800 – 20 May 1851)
Second Immigrant Generation
Entry last updated: 18 Feb 2008
4. Margaret Thompson. Daughter of John Thompson & Isabella Swan. Born Jun 1836 in England. Died 29 Mar 1928 in Harvey. Buried in Harvey Settlement Cemetery.
From newspaper obituary:
Harvey Sta., April 3 (1928) -- The last direct link between Harvey and England was severed on March 29, when Miss Margaret Thompson, the last survivor of the party of 25 families who left England in 1837 and settled soon afterward in what is now the parish of Manners Sutton, passed away at her home here, at the age of 91 years.
She was born in Northumberland County, England, near the Scottish border, in June 1836, and came to New Brunswick next year with her parents, John and Isabella (Swan) Thompson. Her father was for years the village schoolmaster of Harvey.
Excerpt from newspaper article - 9 Jun 1927--
Six-Day Celebration to Mark 90th Anniversary of Founding of Settlement and Dedication of New Church. One Original Settler Still Living.
It is an interesting fact that Miss Margaret Thompson, aged 91 years, who is living today at Harvey, was a toddling baby when the unsettled section was entered by the Scotch families and homes established. Naturally Miss Thompson will be a central figure in the proposed Old Home Week of June.
Miss Thompson, in a recent interview given a representative of the Telegraph-Journal, recalled interesting phases of early life in Harvey. She stated that during those early days wild animals were frequent visitors to the settlement and it was necessary for the men of the village to organize hunting parties to exterminate as many of the more troublesome kind as possible or to drive them as far afield as possible in order to protest their stock.
Supplies were sometimes very difficult to get, she said, and she remembered that one spring the little band of settlers were obliged to live chiefly on honey and milk because it was impossible to get through to Fredericton to procure food. A Mr. Wilson and his boy used to go every week, when possible, to Fredericton to bring back food.
Oxen were used for several years before horses were brought to the settlement.
Speaking of the houses in which they lived in the early days, Miss Thompson stated that the structures were about 12 feet wide and about 16 feet long and were built of spruce logs with bark on them. Each dwelling consisted of only one room, and all the houses were built alike. The head boards of the beds and the posts were six feet high with a curtain suspended from rings so that when one wished to retire he could secure privacy by pulling the curtains around and closing in the occupant.
For about 15 years the people were without a regular pastor and were accustomed to meet each Sabbath in the different homes, when the elders read the sciptures and gave the sermons. This continued until the school was built. Due to the scattered settlement it was necessary for the children to walk six miles to reach school before that time.
Miss Thompson remarked that while her people had somewhat hard times in Harvey in those early days, it must be remembered that they had left hard times in Scotland, where the women and children all worked and received the equivalent of 10 cents per day for pulling turnips and doing other hard work about the farm.